Over the past decade, several major museums have opened satellite galleries in Málaga, and the city has emerged as a destination for art lovers. These are five places not to miss:
Housed in the 16th-century Palacio de Villalón, this museum displays Spanish painting, particularly from the 19th century. The first floor has works that depict Andalusian scenes of bullfights, village life, fiestas and dancing. The art on the second floor includes old masters, including Francisco de Zurbaran’s “Santa Marina,” plus dreamy canvases by painters like Joaquín Sorolla and Ignacio Zuloaga. The museum also hosts two major temporary exhibitions. Closed Mondays.
Museo Carmen Thyssen Málaga
Plaza Carmen Thyssen, Calle Compañía 10. Tel. (34) 902-303-131
Occupying a multicolored glass cube on the waterfront, the Málaga branch of the famous Paris institution has become an icon of the city since it opened in 2015. The museum features art on loan but also hosts cutting-edge temporary exhibitions. The current collection on loan, From Miró to Barceló: A Century of Spanish Art, will remain on display until November 2021. Closed Tuesdays.
Centre Pompidou Málaga
Pasaje Doctor Carrillo Casaux. Tel. (34) 951-926-200
This fascinating museum, housed in the neoclassical Palacio de la Aduana, is especially rich in archaeological finds that plot the history of Málaga. These include cave paintings, Phoenician and Roman objects, and Moorish art and artifacts. An extensive collection of paintings by Málagan and other Spanish artists is also on display, including Picasso’s “The Old Man With the Blanket.” Closed Mondays.
Museo de Málaga
Plaza de la Aduana. Tel. (34) 951-911-904
Málaga’s branch of the State Hermitage Museum opened in 2015 and displays a rotating selection of works from its parent institution in St. Petersburg. The museum focuses on Russian art. Among the artists represented are Ilya Repin, Wassily Kandinsky, Vladimir Tatlin, Alexander Rodchenko and Marc Chagall. The museum also hosts two major temporary shows annually. Closed Mondays.
Colección del Museo Ruso
Avenida Sor Teresa Prat 15, Tabacalera. Tel. (34) 951-926-150
Pablo Picasso was born in Málaga in 1881, and this museum, dedicated to the city’s most famous son, is housed by the 16th-century Palacio de Buenavista. A recent makeover has improved the organization of the collections and given the galleries better, more natural lighting. The most important recent change, though, is the addition of over 160 paintings, some of which have never been on public display before. Among the new works are the “Portrait of Lola,” the artist’s sister; “The Sparrow,” which Picasso painted when he was a teenager; and “The Three Graces,” a composition that recalls “Guernica.” Archaeological discoveries uncovered during the renovation include Phoenician, Roman and medieval walls.
Museo Picasso Málaga
Palacio de Buenavista, Calle San Agustín 8. Tel. (34) 952-127-600